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NEWS: For immediate release August 10, 2016
Contact: Rosemary Shahan – 530-759-9440

Consumer Group Warns: Avoid Buying Used Cars from CarMax

Today Consumers for Auto Reliability and Safety warned used car buyers to steer clear of CarMax, which continues to sell unsafe, defective recalled cars, including vehicles with dangerous Takata air bags that have been linked to 10 deaths and over 100 injuries, including loss of eyesight and strokes. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the Takata air bags in some models pose a 50% chance of exploding with excessive force and spewing metal fragments at drivers and / or passengers in a crash, and should be driven only to a dealership for repairs.

“CarMax sells cars that are ticking timebombs on wheels,” said Rosemary Shahan, President of Consumers for Auto Reliability and Safety (CARS), a non-profit auto safety and consumer advocacy organization. “Car buyers should avoid shopping at CarMax unless they stop selling recalled cars with lethal safety defects that they fail to get repaired.”

Many of the recalled vehicles CarMax offers for sale cannot be repaired, because the manufacturer has not yet developed a fix, or because of parts shortages – leaving car buyers and their passengers at risk. Most, if not all, auto manufacturers require their franchised car dealers to refrain from selling defective recalled cars, pending repairs. It may take years before enough repair parts are available to repair recalled cars such as the more than 100 million vehicles worldwide with Takata airbag inflators that need to be replaced before 2019.

Under broad, general state laws in all 50 states, it is illegal for car dealers to sell recalled used cars to consumers. Dealers who sold recalled used cars have faced lawsuits for violating implied warranties, engaging in unfair and deceptive acts or practices, or violating more specific laws such as New York’s requirement for dealers to certify that all used vehicles they offer for sale are “roadworthy.”

When people have been injured or killed by the defective cars, the dealers also faced legal action alleging negligence or wrongful death, or violation of the common law duty of care. Some dealers have entered into confidential settlements with families of victims killed by their negligence.

CarMax is the largest retailer of used cars in the nation. CarMax advertises that all the cars it offers for sale must pass a “125+ point Certified Quality Inspection.” However, CarMax often fails to ensure that safety recall repairs are performed prior to sale. More details about CarMax’s sales of recalled cars are posted at: http://www.carsfoundation.org/